DEFINITION AND FUNCTIONS OF MANAGEMENT
Management is a process, a series of actions and activities or operations that lead to some end. Management can be
looked at as a rational scientific process or as a process of human interaction. Scientific management pre-supposes ability
to select, train, motivate and supervise workers by rational, scientific, and measurable criteria. A human relations approach
aims at making the worker psychologically and emotionally satisfied so that he may be productive. The human approach to management
will in the end produce the best results. Management should not be looked at as a complicated matter. It can be simple and
straight-forward. It is true to say that management of people is just plain common sense. The core function of management
is problem-solving. Other functions include: decision-making, planning, organizing, controlling, evaluating, communication,
negotiation, and coordination.
A manager gets others to produce and not to produce himself. Thus a manager must know how to get good performance out
of others. A good manager can manage anything with sufficient resources. Management need not be specialized. The same general
principles that are used in one organization can be used in another one with some modifications. This is because management
is basically dealing with people and not the technology or the environment. Whoever knows how to manage people can manage
them wherever they are. A good manager is realistic, has good and effective communication skills, is persistent, is firm but
flexible, and is motivated, as well as being motivating for others. A good manager has the following attributes: realism,
good communication, persistence, and motivation.
MANAGEMENT IN THE ORGANIZATION
Span of control refers to the number of people or projects that a manager
can personally supervise. Span of control can be extended by more delegation and
better control. The manager should not try to be personally everywhere all the time. Organizational communication can be improved
by using all lines of communication. Vertical communication is between superiors and subordinates and can be up-down or down-up.
Horizontal communication is between peers. Diagonal communication cuts across the vertical hierarchical system and across
administrative subdivisions. Multiple channels should be used: oral, written etc. The following methods can be used in an
organization: counselling, grievance procedures, attitude surveys, ombudsmen, open door policy, suggestions box, periodic
meetings, written material, and social gatherings. The organizational grapevine can be positive or negative. Important information
especially about attitudes or fears can only come from the grapevine. It however also conveys wrong or misleading rumors.
You must learn to deal with rumors effectively. Listen to them because some of the information may be true. Provide correct
information formally and informally to counteract the rumors. A manager requires the following resources in order to produce
results: people, money, physical assets, time, and information. People are the most important and most valued resource. With
good people the other resources can be generated.
MANAGEMENT: STYLES and PROBLEMS
Management styles can be classified based on exercise of power or activity. In the exercise of power managers can be
divided into the following categories: exploitative authoritative, benevolent authoritative, consultative and participative,
laisser-faire or hands-off. Managers can be classified according to activities as follows: directing, coaching, supporting,
supporting, and delegating. Management by objectives (MBO) is a process of setting goals, delegation, and reviewing achievements
in the light of the set objectives. The causes of management failure are poor human skills, limited resources, poor MIS, ignorance
of stakeholders, political infighting, bureaucratic interference, moving goal posts, and challenge to managerial authority.